m3n4.net July 20, 2018

Russian hackers obtained top-secret NSA information

07 October 2017, 12:12 | Tara Lloyd

Patrick Semansky AP

Patrick Semansky  AP

"Hackers working for the Russian government stole details of how the US penetrates foreign computer networks and defends against cyberattacks after a National Security Agency contractor removed the highly classified material and put it on his home computer, according to multiple people with knowledge of the matter." the Wall Street Journal reads.

The hackers appeared to have been able to identify the stolen files because the contractor used antivirus software made by Kaspersky Lab, a Russian company, The Wall Street Journal reported.

The Journal reported Thursday that the breach happened in 2015 but officials didn't discover it until spring 2016. Kaspersky Labs, the Russian makers of the antivirus software, said that they have "not been provided any information or evidence substantiating this alleged incident".

Some companies specializing in data protection using tensions around Kaspersky Lab in the U.S. to promote their products and Kaspersky plans to sue them.

Martin's case followed the 2013 revelations of Edward Snowden, who fled his job as an NSA contractor in Hawaii for Hong Kong and then Russian Federation after stealing and releasing a trove of data on classified USA data-collection programs. Last month, President Donald Trump ordered USA government agencies to purge Kaspersky products from their computers altogether. Those may have included NSA code and documents describing software that, in practice, act like malware targeting computer networks of other nations.

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Earlier this week, speaking at a cybersecurity forum sponsored by the Washington Post, White House Cybersecurity Coordinator Rob Joyce hinted about how the Russian government could exploit Kaspersky software.

The data will enable the Russians to infiltrate the US networks and protect their own network from hacking. All it did was raise even more suspicions, and should have had everyone checking to ensure that their computers didn't have Kaspersky on them.

Washington last month banned us federal agencies from using Kaspersky products, citing alleged "ties between certain Kaspersky officials and Russian intelligence and other government agencies".

Kaspersky Lab said in a statement it "does not have inappropriate ties to the Russian government". The software was then used as a vulnerability by Russian individuals or organizations who stole the confidential data.

Kaspersky Lab, which has 400 million customers globally, has denied it spies for the Russian government.

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Given the United States government's recent decision to ban the use of Kaspersky AV software, one might assume Kaspersky itself acted maliciously. Social media accounts linked to the Russian government also reportedly attempted to intensify racial tensions during the USA elections by regularly sharing content meant to fuel the outrage of their audiences, including videos of police violence against African Americans.

"We make no apologies for being aggressive in the battle against malware and cybercriminals".

US Senator Ben Sasse, a member of the Armed Services Committee, chastised the NSA in a statement. "The NSA needs to get its head out of the sand and solve its contractor problem".

The facts, as they stand, are that neither The Wall Street Journal nor the NSA has provided any proof that Kaspersky was involved in this hack.

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